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January 28, 2014

Tolling method for Ohio River Bridges Project taking shape

Vendor named for transponders for electronic tolling

JEFFERSONVILLE — The method by which tolls related to the Ohio River Bridges Project will be collected came a bit more into focus Monday.

The Kentucky-Indiana Joint Board for the Ohio River Bridges Project named the vendor that will provide the transponders for electronic tolling on the east end and downtown crossings and the Kennedy Bridge.

Kapsch TrafficCom USA, based in McLean, Va., was the lowest responsive bidder for the procurement. The joint board approved moving forward with Kapsch unanimously.

“We were fortunate that Kapsch came to the table hungry,” said Will Wingfield, Indiana Department of Transportation spokesman.

Kapsch will provide two different types of transponders, along with equipment that will detect the transponders.

Local transponders, which will only be used on the Louisville-Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges, will cost Kentucky and Indiana $1.05 apiece. These transponders are about the size of a business card, and will be affixed to vehicles’ windshields.

Kapsch will also provide E-ZPass transponders, which can be used at any of 25 toll facilities in 15 states that operate on the E-ZPass electronic toll collection system. These transponders, which are about the size of a garage-door opener, will cost the states $9.25 apiece.

The costs of these transponders to motorists have not yet been announced. The News and Tribune has previously reported that transponders for frequent bridge users could be provided at a low cost or at no cost.

“Kapsch is a very well-respected name in tolling,” said Clint Murphy, INDOT director of tolling operations.

The total value of the Kapsch contract is estimated to be valued at $1.4 million over the next five years, according to Wingfied. The contract is for two years, but there is the option for three one-year renewals.

All-electronic tolling will be used on the two new bridges and the Kennedy Memorial Bridge, which will be renovated as part of the project. Tolls will not be collected at tolling plazas, which means traffic will not be slowed down by tolling.

The board also approved a resolution authorizing the procurement of public relations services to educate the public about the project, which will be paid by Kentucky, and the procurement of tolling system operations.

The board received submittals from seven companies seeking the contract to operate the tolling system, of which six were deemed qualified. The board expects to name a tolling operator later this year. Indiana will pay for the tolling system.

The six companies that submitted qualified bids for the tolling system operation are 3M Company, Brisa Inovacao e Tecnologia S.A., Kapsch TrafficCom, Sanef Operations America, TransCore LP and Xerox State & Local Solutions.

 

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